In his first season on Terry Francona's staff after Oct. 26, 2017 hiring...Overall this is his eighth season as Indians Pitching Coach and 15th overall at the Major League level...Was Pitching Coach of the Boston Red Sox from May 2015-2017...The 2017 Sox staff finished second to Cleveland in 2017 in the American League in ERA (4th-lowest in MLB) and shutouts (11) and recorded the second-fewest walks (465) and set a single-season franchise record in strikeouts (1580, 3rd-most in the A.L.)... Began 2015 as pitching coach for the Indians' Triple-A Columbus Clippers and was a Special Assistant to Baseball Operations for Cleveland in 2014...Served four seasons (also under Eric Wedge) as Pitching Coach of the Seattle Mariners from August 2010-2013...During his first tenure with the Indians he guided the club to the American League ERA title in 2005 (3.61) and tutored A.L. Cy Young Winners CC Sabathia (2007) and Cliff Lee (2008)...Four pitchers have won Cy Young Awards with Willis as Pitching Coach: Sabathia, Lee, Felix Hernandez (2010) and Rick Porcello (2016)...In 2016, Boston's pitching staff posted the AL's lowest opponent SLG (.397) and allowed the fewest homers (176)...Began 2010 as Mariners Minor League Pitching Coordinator...On 8/9/2010 joined Seattle's MLB staff, where he remained as pitching coach through 2013...Began coaching career with 13 seasons in the Indians organization from 1997-2009...Worked his way up from Short-A Watertown (1997) and Rookie-level Burlington (1998) to Single-A Columbus (1999), Double-A Akron (2000) and then Triple-A Buffalo (2001-02).
Right-hander enjoyed a 9-year MLB playing career...Pitched on 2 teams that went on to win the World Series (1984 Tigers and 1991 Twins)...Went 22-16 with 13 saves and a 4.25 ERA (184 ER/390.0 IP) in 267 Major League games (2 starts) between the Tigers (1984), Reds (1984-86), White Sox (1988), and Twins (1991-95)...From 1991-93, went 18-6 with a 2.78 ERA (70 ER/226.1 IP) in 152 appearances, all in relief...Posted career bests in wins (8-3) and ERA (2.63) over 40 games with the 1991 Twins...Helped MIN to that year's World Series title with a 2.92 ERA (4 ER/12.1 IP) over 7 relief appearances in the postseason...Selected by Detroit in the 23rd round of the 1983 June Draft out of the University of North Carolina-Wilmington.
Full name CARL BLAKE WILLIS...Married, Rachel...Has a daughter, Ally, and two sons, Daniel and Bryson...Has one grandson, Luke...Is a 1979 graduate of Piedmont Academy in Providence, NC where he played baseball and basketball... Earned a bachelor's degree in park and recreation management at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington...Played four years of baseball for the Seahawks and was inducted into the school's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1998.